The Atlantic’s Marc Ambinder reports that the environmental lobby is on red alert over an amendment to Obama’s Trillion Dollar Debt Plan from Sen. John Barrasso (R-WY). Ambinder says Barrasso is still a firm ‘no’ on the package, but is proposing an amendment that would exempt any project funded by the plan from a normally mandatory National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) review.
Normally it takes a federal construction projects an average of 4.4 years to complete a NEPA review. Throw in the Clean Water Act’s section 404 requirements, and before a single shovel can hit the earth it usually takes 5.6 years for the average federal project to jump through all the normal environmental hoops.
Barrasso’s amendment would allow any project whose NEPA review takes longer than 270 days to be exempt from the review requirement. Like Barrasso, we’re still dead set against this stimulus plan, but if the left wants to gamble our future with their Trillion Dollar Debt Plan shouldn’t it at least be given a prayer of working? There is no way it possibly can with NEPA still in place.